TODAY’S READING: PSALM 100-105
Exhortation to praise God; the psalmist’s profession of uprightness; the prayer of an afflicted man for mercy on himself and Zion; praise for the Lord’s mercies; praise for the Lord’s majesty; the wonderful works of the Lord in behalf of Israel.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
The first verse in today’s reading is a call to “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands” (100:1). It is a reminder that God’s passion is and has always been the world-wide worship of His Son from every kindred, tongue, people and nation. Don’t ever lose sight of the scope of our commission! We are to make disciples of all nations, or as verse one says, in “all lands.” What could you point to that you are actively and specifically doing to see that God’s passion as it is expressed in verse one is being realized? Are you presently discipling someone (i.e. are you presently reproducing a reproducer of reproducers)? When was the last time you actually gave the gospel to someone? Do you give above your regular tithes and offerings to missions? Are you involved in our Bible publishing ministry? When was the last time you went (or have you ever been) on a short term missions trip? Note also in verse 2, we are to carry out our commission with “gladness,” not out o!
f guilt or obligation.
In a world that absolutely caters to the “lust of the eyes,” Psalm 101:3 is a doozey! “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes.” Some more “mature” believers evidently feel that they have “graduated” past such extreme measures in the name of their “liberty in Christ,” or want to label you “legalistic” when you say that setting no wicked thing before our eyes includes many (most?) movies, TV shows, commercials, magazines, advertisements, the internet, and any wicked thing we might set before the eyes of our imagination. Call it what they may, what part of “NO” in “set NO wicked thing before your eyes” is even remotely difficult to understand?
Whereas verse 3 of Psalm 101 is a warning about HOW we spend our time, verse 4 warns us about WHO we spend it with. We have been called to reach the lost, but we must recognize the reality of verses like I Cor. 15:33 – “Be not deceived: evil communications (also translated “company”) corrupt good manners (or morals).” Our most intimate associations must be with brothers and sisters in Christ, who have likewise (along with us!) surrendered themselves to Christ’s Lordship. Note the continuation of the thought in 101:7 – “He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight”!
At times of your life when you’re really “going through it,” Psalm 102 is a great place to find refuge. Notice the title (listed in most Bibles), “A prayer of the afflicted when he is overwhelmed, and poureth out his complaint before the Lord.” Of course, prophetically the psalm points to the Nation of Israel at the end of the Great Tribulation when the Lord Jesus Christ will “arise and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come” (102:13). Note also, the definite Second Coming references in verses 16 and 21-22.
Feeding off of verse one of Psalm 103, I know I have sought to bless the holy name of the Lord from my soul, I’m not certain, however, that I’ve ever actually done it with “all that is within me.” Have you? I’m absolutely certain that that is what the worship of heaven will be (Rev. 4), the difficulty is in bringing the worship of heaven to earth, and to our lives!
Note that Psalm 103 begins and ends the same way – “Bless the Lord, O my soul.” This psalm is about God’s mercy. The nature of mercy (vs. 4), the measure of mercy (vs. 8), the scope of mercy (vs. 11), and the duration of mercy (vs. 17). Perhaps the more we learn about and grow to appreciate the incredible mercy the Lord has extended to us, the more apt we will be to genuinely “bless the Lord will all that is within in us.”
The first and last verse of Psalm 104, likewise, includes the exhortation to “Bless the Lord, O my soul.” Whereas Psalm 103 addresses God’s mercy, Psalm 104 is all about God’s majesty, and focuses on the wonder of creation.
Psalm 105 is the first in a series of five Psalms that feature the phrase, “O give thanks unto the Lord,” (See Psalm 106, 107, 118 and 136.) This Psalm, along with Psalm 106 highlights Israel’s history much like we observed in Psalm 78. The first five verses contain nine (9 is the number of fruit-bearing in the Bible) exhortations that should be carried out by every child of God in any dispensation:
1)“Give thanks” (105:1a)
2)“Call upon his name” (105:1b)
3)“Make known his deeds” (105:1c)
4)“Sing unto him” (105:2a)
5)“Talk ye of all his wondrous works (105:2b)
6)“Glory ye in his name” (105:3a)
8)“Seek his face” (105:4)
9)“Remember his marvelous works” (105:5)
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
As the CREATOR (“It is He that hath made us”) – Psalm 100:3 (John 1:3; Eph. 3:9; Col. 1:16; Rev. 4:11).
As the ONE WHO FORGIVES ALL YOUR INIQUITIES – Psalm 103:3 (Matt. 9:6).